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Full text of "I And Thou"

out of its dream into the appearance. Every means
is an obstacle. Only when every means has collapsed
does the meeting come about.

In face of the directness of the relation everything
indirect becomes irrelevant. It is also irrelevant if
my Thou is already the It for other F$ (" an object of
general experience "), or can become so through the
very accomplishment of this act of my being- For the
real, though certainly swaying and swinging, boundary
runs neither between experience and non-experience*
nor between what is given and what is not given,
nor yet between the world of being and the world of
value; but cutting indifferently across all these provinces
it lies between Thou and It, between the present and
the object.
*
The present, and by that is meant not the point which
indicates from time to time in our thought merely the
conclusion of " finished " time, the mere appearance of
a termination which is fixed and held, but the real, filled
present, exists only in so far as actual presentness,
meeting, and relation exist. The present arises only
in virtue of the fact that the Thou becomes present.
The / of the primary word I-It, that is, the / faced by-
no Thou, but surrounded by a multitude of "contents,"
has no present, only the past. Put in another way,
in so far as man rests satisfied with the things that
he experiences and uses, he lives in the past, and his
moment has no present content* He has nothing
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